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5 Symptoms of Fibroids and Available Treatments

If it hurts, we can help.

Fibroids primarily develop during a woman’s reproductive years, when estrogen levels are at their highest. Approximately 30% of women get fibroids before age 35, and 20 to 80% by age 50. 

 

While fibroids go unnoticed by many women, they often cause ongoing pain. Our compassionate team, including Drew Malany, MD, Michael Hay, MD, Maria Huntley, MD, and two nurse midwives Andraya Hitchner and Carol Kolar, can treat your painful fibroids or address other obstetric or gynecological issues at Women's Health Care Center, PLLC, in Helena, Montana.

5 main symptoms of uterine fibroids

While uterine fibroids rarely develop into cancer, they can still wreak havoc on your life. Depending on their location, fibroids may or may not cause pain. Our doctors generally diagnose fibroids during a pelvic exam or based upon such symptoms as:

 

  1. Heavy menstrual bleeding
  2. Pelvic cramping
  3. Frequent urination or difficulty emptying your bladder
  4. Painful intercourse
  5. Ongoing backache or leg pains

 

Large fibroids can even extend into your pelvis or abdomen. They may also cause extensive pain when they outgrow their blood supply and begin to die.

Types of fibroids

We diagnose a variety of fibroids depending upon their location and size, such as:

 

 

If pelvic pain persists, or you begin spotting between your periods, contact one of our doctors to review your symptoms.

Possible causes of fibroids

While we’re not completely sure what causes fibroids, several common factors may contribute to their development. These include:

 

 

Factors including obesity and frequent consumption of alcohol, red meat, and caffeine, may also increase your risk of fibroids. Fibroids usually shrink after menopause as hormone production decreases. 

Let us ease your fibroid pain

While diet may play a small role in fibroid development, increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables might help reduce their severity. We can discuss treatment options for painful fibroids, including:

 

 

While these may help, they may also cause unwanted side effects, such as headaches, breast tenderness, and more. For those suffering extensively from fibroid-related issues, we offer such surgical treatments as:

Laparoscopic surgery

We make a few tiny incisions to remove your fibroids.

Embolization

We cut off the blood supply to the fibroid so it eventually dies.

Myomectomy

We perform this procedure to remove tumors from the uterus of women still hoping to get pregnant.

Myolysis

We use a laser to shrink the fibroids or cut off its blood supply.

MRI-guided focused ultrasound surgery 

We employ high-energy ultrasound waves to shrink fibroids.

Hysterectomy

In extreme cases, we can remove part or all of the womb for those no longer hoping to get pregnant.

Help is on the way

We also recommend some less invasive, at-home remedies to ease your pain, such as heating pads, gentle stretching, yoga, or t’ai chi. Increasing inflammation-reducing foods like wild salmon and supplements such as curcumin and omega3s, and resveratrol-rich fruits and berries, may minimize uterine fibroid cell growth.

 

To diagnose and ease the pain of fibroids or discuss any other health-related issues with one of our experienced doctors, simply call or book a consultation online with Women's Health Care Center today.

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